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Benedict XVI: “Man is not there to make himself,but to respond to demands made upon him”

9 June 2012

“A fantasy [that people have, of possessing] property takes no account of the fact that, for the great majority of mankind, life is a struggle.  On those grounds I would see this idea of choosing one’s own path in life as a selfish attitude and as a waste of one’s vocation.  Anyone who thinks he already has it all, so that he can take what he wants and center everything on himself is depriving himself of giving what he otherwise could.

Man is not there to make himself, but to respond to demands made upon him.  We all stand in a great arena of history and are dependent upon each other.  A man ought not, therefore, just try to figure out what he would like, but to ask what he can do, and how he can help.  Then he will see that fulfillment does not lie in comfort, ease and following one’s inclinations, but precisely in allowing demands to be made upon one, in taking the harder path. Everything else turns out somehow boring, anyway.  Only the man who “risks the fire”, who recognizes a calling within himself, a vocation, and ideal he must satisfy, who takes on real responsibility, will find fulfillment. It is not in taking, not on the path of comfort that we become rich, but only in giving.”

 Joseph Cardinal  Ratzinger

2 Comments leave one →
  1. rob woodyard permalink
    21 June 2012 8:54 pm

    is this the current pope??

    if so then i am much impressed!!

    what he expresses here is wonderful!!

    god is the giver,,
    man is but a receiver,,

    god issues directions,,
    man simply follows,,

    i don’t dictate to god,,
    he dictates to me,,

    and it is certainly true,,
    that few people see the truth regarding this,,

    usually they think god is there to help them,,
    but they cannot conceive that we are here to help him,,

    and the job required of us is simply to be receivers,,
    accepting whatever he puts in our path,,

    and this is not something to be striven towards,,
    this is already the case,,

    we do exactly what we are supposed to do,,
    without a single exception,,

    only some do not know it,, while others do,,

  2. Christie permalink
    20 March 2016 11:21 pm

    i love this quote! what is it from?

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